Earth day is Monday, April 22. This year's theme for Earth Day is 'Protect our Species'. Human interference is causing irreversible damage and we all need to work together to slow down this damage. The first, easy things that we can all do- Save the bees! Bees are our future. Bees are dying out in vast numbers, mostly because of harmful pesticides, esp. Neonicotinoids (which dramatically short-circuit their memory and navigation), parasites such as the Varroa destructor mites, climate change, and loss of habitat.
Why should we care?
Bees play a super important role in the Earth's eco system. They pollinate $577 billion worth of crops every year, allowing us to enjoy an abundance of flowers, fruit and vegetables. And they are FREE LABOR. Without bees, we will have to HAND POLLINATE our crops- a very slow, painful and impossible process.
Many other species depend on bees for their survival- think of all the animals and birds who live on nuts, berries, honey and fruit and how it affects the entire food chain.
What can we do?
Stop using harmful pesticides
Use natural products. Usually the label will indicate if a pesticide is toxic to bees when the application contacts them directly or by residues. Before using the pesticide, look under “Environmental Hazards” and “Directions for Use”.
Plant more fruit and vegetables. One small plant can go a long way in helping bees and other pollinators have access to valuable habitat. Here are some wonderful plants that attract bees- Blueberries, Raspberries, Lavender, Sunflowers, Asters, Squash, Pumpkins, Chives, and Dahlia. Here's a handy list.
Donate money to bee causes, buy honey and support other companies that promote products made with honey. Honey is a great source of antioxidants, it has antibacterial properties and helps in healing wounds. It's wonderful on the skin, helps with a sore throat and pollen-related allergies, and is a great natural sweetener. What's not to like?
For more reading:
Documentary narrated by Ellen Page: https://www.vanishingbees.com/
Earth day network: Earth Day 2019 Protect our Species
Information about pesticides:
Bee friendly gardens: